Nasrin Babakhani

A Crosscultural Investigation of Literary Magical Realism

My study concentrates on novels from African American, Latin American, and Native American cultural contexts. Texts include Toni Morrison's Beloved, Gloria Naylor's Mama Day, Isabel Allende's The House of the Spirits Laura Esquivel's Like Water for Chocolate, Debra Magpie Earling's Perma Red, and Ana Castillo's So Far From God. My goal is to provide a cultural analysis of the magical elements in these magical realist novels. The study aims to show how these women writers consciously deploy aspects of their cultural heritage, called magical by Western standards, to challenge dominant white culture and the tradition of women's submissiveness. Focusing on women's experiences under the condition of racial and patriarchal oppression, these bicultural writers attempt to foster female self-empowerment by condemning long-established beliefs in white male superiority.